16 Oct 2015

Western Australian planning and property experts were treated to some east coast insights as Urbis Regional Directors Tim Blythe (NSW) and Peter Small (Victoria) discussed the apartment design regulation issues currently dominating their respective home towns, at a sold out Planning Institute of Australia event, held in Perth on 14 October.

Both directors outlined the economic, demographic and lifestyle drivers that were spurring the move to greater density in the inner suburbs and the rise of apartment living in the Sydney and Melbourne markets. To keep up with population growth, the rate of affordable housing supply has to increase, as well as improving efficient land use and urban renewal around transport corridors. Delivering integrated improvements to transport and social infrastructure were also seen as key drivers.

Innovative design and flexibility was also a common theme, where the internal amenity of apartments has been driven by the market, with the industry responding accordingly.

Peter Small PIA WATim Blythe PIA WA

Urbis Regional Directors Peter Small and Tim Blythe  presenting at the sold out PIA event in Perth. Photos: Emma de Jager.

Tim discussed the recent clarification of SEPP 65 regarding apartment sizes, and highlighted the pros and cons of the recent updates to the New South Wales Apartment Design Guide, which sets out guidelines for 32 design categories relating to siting developments, amenity, configuration and performances.

In presenting on a brief history of Melbourne’s evolving planning policies, Peter also highlighted the recent implementation of Amendment C262, which proposes limiting building heights, mandatory setbacks, and ensures no overshadowing of public spaces along the Yarra River. These interim changes have made immediate impacts on numerous CBD developments.

For more information on apartment design and delivery in your state, please contact your local Urbis office.